When Your Rising Star’s a Dud
Dr. Nancy Haller
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Jim Collins, the author of Good to Great, found that the most successful companies are known for "getting the right people on the bus, the wrong people off the bus and the right people in the right seats”.
He is referring to the importance of smart hiring and training for business success. The “right people” are those individuals who fit into your practice and help you to accomplish your future goals.
Determining who will be a good employee and fit into your practice is an enormous challenge. Hiring accuracy is reduced further by the fact that most dental offices use only interviews, a resume, and an application to make a decision that will have a HUGE impact on productivity and revenue.
Consider the statistics: a “bad hire” is estimated to cost you between 30% and 150% of an employee’s annual salary!!
Getting the “right people” onto your bus starts before you place a job ad. You need job descriptions. When developing job descriptions, first think about what skills and experience a candidate will need today and in the future, then, identify those critical components that are not trainable.
But even if a candidate meets those requirements, the “right people” also need predictable behaviors. They need to be conscientious, stress-resistant, and cooperative. These characteristics are referred to as personality. To get the right people on the bus, you must correctly define the personality of the job, and then evaluate applicants according to the total job personality. This is the only way to maximize a good fit. McKenzie Management has done that for you.
We conducted personality-based job analyses for four dental positions - Dentist, Front Office, Hygienist, and Clinical Assistant. First we identified experts in the dental field who have direct and current experience with each job, its duties, responsibilities, and requirements for successful performance. These ‘subject matter experts’ then completed work style surveys for each of the four positions. The surveys consisted of questions about the requirements for effective performance using a rating scale of Unhelpful, Not Required, Helpful, or Essential.
The end result is the Employee Assessment Test By having the candidate/employee answer 107 questions on-line, you can tell how close your candidate matches peak performers in their job description.
If you rely on traditional interviews be aware that they are subjective. Interviews measure social skills, not job suitability. Individuals who create a positive impression are viewed as more capable than quiet or nervous applicants. Because they are not objective, interviews are the least accurate predictors of job success.
Perhaps you rely on resumes and believe that this improves your hiring accuracy. However, the U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 90% of all resumes contain false information!
You may rely on reference checks, convinced that talking with previous employers will give you useful insights. Forget it. Former employers generally reveal nothing of significance. In fact, in many states it is illegal to give any information except for dates of employment.
With the cost of hiring the “wrong” person rising, you owe it to yourself to find a better way to hire employees. The solution is to match the applicant’s personality to the job.
Studies show that employment testing outperforms traditional interviews 4 to 1 in predicting job performance. As a complement to your selection process, testing is a proven, effective method of getting the right people on your bus. The Employee Assessment Test strictly adheres to legal guidelines for pre-employment testing and is available only through McKenzie Management.
Every dentist wants employees who are happy in their jobs with great attitudes. When employees like their jobs, they'll do a better job. Having the RIGHT PERSON in the RIGHT JOB is absolutely key to profitability.
Next article: Keeping the right people on your bus: Maximizing retention.
|California Dental Association in Anaheim on May 3, 2007|
|Connecticut State Dental Association on May 11, 2007|
Dr. Haller can help you to get your practice from good to great.
Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Dr. Jerry Marks – Case Study #222
“I need more new patients!”, said Dr. Marks who called McKenzie Management to see if he could “order” an additional 20 new patients per month. We sure wish that we could fill such a request. However, we do teach doctors and staff how to determine the number of new patients they really need.
Like many things in business, “more” is not always better. Sometimes it is “quality” and not “quantity”. Dr. Marks is a good example of this.
First, let’s determine the definition of “new patient”. McKenzie Management’s definition of a new patient is someone that has been seen for a professional cleaning or perio maintenance appointment for the first time in the office. Usually, this also means a patient that has been seen for a comprehensive exam, by the doctor, and then examined by the hygienist and placed into the recall system. There are a few exceptions but we will use this definition for this example.
The reason for using this definition, opposed to any new patient, such as an emergency extraction, is that patients that go into the hygiene recall program contribute to the growth of the practice and patients that are seen only periodically for emergency treatment do not. If you recall from previous articles, your practice grows by increasing the number of hygiene days, NOT by increasing the number of “new” patients that are seen.
Additional practice statistics relative to the practice growth:
This information told me that even though he was seeing 100 “new” patients a month, the practice was not growing! See, for those of you who thought you would be thrilled with 100 new patients a month, this means nothing relative to practice growth. Why? It is all about “quality and not quantity”.
After spending the first two days with Dr. Marks, we discussed his practice strategies and philosophy.
New practice recommendations:
It may appear that these goals are unrealistic, but when I returned to his office less than 12 months later, he had achieved all of these and was reducing his PPO participation.
Now you are asking ….”How much money did he lose going through these changes?” As these changes took place, there were also indirect changes that took place, such as a reduced number of staff, shorter office hours (no weekends and evenings), more customer service, and much less stress!
He also added an additional 2.5 days of hygiene per week and took more vacation time. I would call this working “smarter and not harder”, wouldn’t you? Let’s look at the following:
New practice statistics:
Dr. Marks is on schedule to net produce and collect more over the next 12 months than he did over the past 24 months on average. By applying McKenzie Management’s business systems and maintaining his awareness of how his practice is performing by reviewing monthly statistics, the day-to-day activities of the practice are not a concern anymore. Dr. Marks has learned how to “keep his finger on the pulse of the practice” as well as make sense of his monthly P&L that he receives from his accountant to determine if his overhead goals are being met.
Now…..I ask you. What is more important? Quantity or Quality? Dr. Marks will tell you that 100 “new” patients a month did not get him where he is now or where he will be next year. But, the 25 new “comprehensive” patients a month will!